Tag: ya fantasy

Book Blast: Borrowed Magic by Shari Lambert

Borrowed MagicBorrowed Magic by Shari Lambert

After a three-year siege, Lord Kern, the dark mage, is dead. Magic has left Tredare, and life is almost back to normal.
For everyone except Maren, that is.
Before the siege, an attack by Lord Kern left Maren near death and with a sliver of magic buried deep inside her. Now, for reasons Maren doesn’t understand, that magic has been triggered, giving her the ability to “see” the truth: that her world is nothing more than a magical façade; and that the kingdom’s hero may not be a hero at all.
But this gift of sight comes at a high cost. Maren is in constant pain, and fears her own death is imminent. Plus, no one believes her suspicions that another Dark Mage has risen, and that Tredare may be in just as much danger as it was when Kern was alive.
With the country’s future in the hands of a man who’s vowed revenge on its king, Maren must convince someone else of the truth. Unfortunately, the only person powerful enough to help is also the one man she can’t trust; the man she almost married; the man who abandoned her and disappeared for three years: Kern’s son.
As Tredare crumbles around them, Maren must persuade him to help – before the king is murdered by the very hero he reveres; and before the same magic that gives Maren the gift of sight also takes her life.

amazonbarnes and nobleKobo * Smashwords * iTuneExcerpt from Borrowed Magic

The siege had ended. Lord Kern, the dark mage, was dead.

Maren pushed her forehead against the warm glass, straining for a better view of the commotion below. A cheer went up from the crowd, and she searched for any sign of the man making his way to the castle. The man who’d saved the city – and the kingdom.

All she could see was a mass of bodies, crowding the path leading up from the city gates.

It wasn’t uncommon to see people in the streets of Delorme. They’d come every day for the past two and a half years, standing in subdued silence as they waited for the daily rations that grew more and more meager as the weeks went by. But today the crowd wasn’t silent. Today was different.

The tent cities beyond the wall, once teeming with soldiers draining the city of life, were now abandoned, destroyed, thin plumes of smoke the only movement. What was left of the lush, green fields sat charred and barren. Desolate.

“Anything?”

Maren jumped back from the window and felt the color rise to her cheeks.

“It’s all right, Maren,” Adare said, trying to get her own view of the street below. “We’re all curious. And you have more right than the rest of us. You knew him better than anyone.”

The dull, familiar ache in her chest forced Maren to hesitate until she was sure she could speak without her voice breaking. Even then, she couldn’t meet the queen’s eyes. “I’m not sure I knew him at all.”

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Praise for Borrowed Magic

“I was enthralled from the very beginning up until the very end. This is one of those rare stories that has been created by a truly talented author, that captivates its readers and pulls them in. I felt every emotion as it reached its final conclusion, and I was able to breathe a sigh of relief that we were given the ending we so desperately hoped for.” -Tasha Williams, Red’s Midnight Readers

“Borrowed Magic is a spellbinding story, and the mystery kept me turning pages well after I should have gone to bed. Completely engrossing.” -Dawn Rae Miller, New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of Larkstorm (The Sensitives Trilogy)

“Shari Lambert has a way of capturing your mind and transporting you into her fantasy world. Filled with royalty and dark forces at court, Borrowed Magic reminds me of a Phillipa Gregory novel with the bonus of magic.” -Jamie Blair, author of Leap of Faith

 

SeigeFREE EBOOK

Siege: A Borrowed Magic Novella

For six years, peace has reigned over the kingdom of Tredare. Lord Kern, the dark mage who murdered the king and queen eight years prior, is imprisoned in a magical tomb.

Or so everyone thought – until one night when Kern appears during a ball at the royal castle, and life in Tredare changes for the worst.

Especially for innocent Maren.

Unbeknown to her, Maren’s father has a past history with Kern, and now she’s crossed Kern’s path, getting in the way of something he wants. Angry and boiling with dark magic, Kern vows to destroy those who dare defy him – including Maren, who protects the current King and Queen.

Despite Maren’s best efforts, Kern lays siege to Tredare for three years. Years Maren spends plotting revenge on the man who’s determined to ruin Tredare.

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shari LambertAuthor Shari Lambert

Shari has always loved to read. “Bookworm” may even be an understatement. But when she discovered Georgette Heyer in high school, her love of reading exploded. Ms. Heyer’s books were not only entertaining, witty, and smart, but they saved Shari from the awkward, unromantic teenage years. To this day, Shari’s favorite books all have romance in them.

Although Shari spent a good deal of her time at Brigham Young University on the ballroom dance team, she did manage to get a BA in History and English before going on to get a Juris Doctorate. After graduation, she decided her first priority was to be a mom — a career she’s stuck with and loved.

In between cleaning, laundry, and homework, Shari writes. Just like with reading, she wants to get lost in a world, whether imaginary or historical.

She lives just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah with her husband and four children.

Website * Facebook * Twitter

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BookBlast Giveaway

$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 2/23/16

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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Release Day Celebration : Darkness Fair by Rachel A. Marks

I’m so excited to be participating in the release day celebration of DARKNESS FAIR (The Dark Cycle #2) by Rachel A. Marks. Take a moment to check out this awesome Young Adult series, and while you are here don’t forget to enter the giveaway!

About The Book

DARKNESS FAIR
The Dark Cycle #2
Author: Rachel A. Marks Pages: 333
Amazon | Goodreads

Against the backdrop of an ancient battle between the forces of Light and the forces of Darkness, Aidan struggles to control the newly awakened powers that seem to be his only hope for rescuing Ava, his little sister, trapped somewhere beyond the Veil. As he gravitates to Kara, the dangerously unstable girl who helped him realize his abilities, a terrible mistake of fate is revealed that points him back toward Rebecca, whose role is becoming more critical to the battle. And no matter what his heart wants, it might be too late to stop the pieces already in motion.

Without knowing the sacrifices that will be required of them, Aidan and his motley crew of friends—each with their own role to play—must face the demon threat head-on. They’re the only ones keeping the growing army of Darkness at bay, and if they fail, the future of humanity could be lost.

About The Author

Rachel A. Marks is an award-winning author and professional artist, a surfer and dirt-bike rider, chocolate lover and keeper of faerie secrets. She was voted: Most Likely to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse, but hopes she’ll never have to test the theory. Her debut novel DARKNESS BRUTAL is due out from Amazon/Skyscape July 1st. Visit her on her website:http://www.rachelannemarks.com/

 

 

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Blog Tour: Assassin’s Heart by Sarah Ahiers

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Hello Readers

Welcome to the Assassin’s Heart Blog tour. To see the full schedule, click on the banner above. Read on for my review and be sure to enter the Giveaway!

Title: ASSASSIN’S HEART Assassin's heart
Author: Sarah Ahiers
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Pages: 400
Publisher: HarperTeen
Formats: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook
Find it: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks

In the kingdom of Lovero, nine rival Families of assassins lawfully kill people for a price. As a highly skilled member of one of these powerful clans, seventeen-year-old Lea Saldana has always trusted in the strength of her Family. Until she awakens to find them murdered and her home in flames. The Da Vias, the Saldanas’ biggest enemy, must be responsible—and Lea should have seen it coming. But her secret relationship with the Da Vias’ son, Val, has clouded her otherwise killer instinct—and given the Da Vias more reason than ever to take her Family down.

Racked with guilt and shattered over Val’s probable betrayal, Lea sets out to even the score, with her heart set on retaliation and only one thought clear in her mind: make the Da Vias pay.

With shades of The Godfather and Romeo and Juliet, this richly imagined fantasy from debut author Sarah Ahiers is a story of love, lies, and the ultimate vengeance.

My Review

Assassin’s Heart is a story of love and family, betrayal, revenge and redemption, set in the city of Lovero, where the God of Death, is worshipped by her disciples, the nine assassin families. They have the unorthodox privelege of being able to execute persons as a way of life with Safraella’s blessing.

The main protaganist Oleander (Lea) Saldana’s family is number one but this spot is a precarious one as their family and future has been decimated by the recent plague. Lea has a secret; she is in a relationship with someone from a rival family, the Da Vias with whom they share a territory, Ravenna. This family also has some bad history with the Saldana’s and the matriarch of the Da Vias has never forgotten. Being the richest of all the nine families they are primed to take down the Da Vias and would like nothing but to see them fall, and they make sure they do this in a particularly brutal manner designed to leave no survivors but Lea escapes and laden with guilt that her forbidden relationship might have been the instrument of thier destruction , she  vows revenge for her slain family.

This story was so addictive and read like a twisted Romeo and Juliet with with some elements of the Godfather and I absolutely loved it. Lea Saldana was a particulary interesting character. She was not in the least squeamish or regretful about taking lives in her line of work and comes off as being very capable , fearless and cocky in the beginning.

After the tragedy, a new side of her emerges. She is fearful and anxious which just humanised her in my eyes. I loved her determination and stubborness which was necessary if she was to survive. She was quite arrogant and full of herself but I could understand that after having taken so many lives at such a young age, that one could feel invincible and with the backing of her God and her conviction, self righteous.

The unique concept of a world where an assassin was allowed to go about their jobs without fear of repercusssion was fascinating althout I dare say i wouldn’t want to live there. I felt the end was quite appropriate and most of the loose ends were neatly tied up and I loved the lack of a cliffhanger in this.

Overall, a riveting imaginative storyline complemented by well-developed , believable characters, with dark twists and romantic  innuendos guaranteed to capture your interest and keep you glued to the pages, regretting that it has to come to an end.

My Rating

4 hearts

 

About Sarah:

Sarah

Sarah Ahiers is working towards an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults and lives in Minnesota with three dogs and a house full of critters. She has a collection of steampunk hats and when she’s not writing she fills her time with good games, good food, good friends and good family.

Sarah writes Young Adult and Middle Grade novels and occasionally dabbles in Picture Books. Fantasy is her favorite genre, though she sometimes can be found playing around with Horror and other things that go bump in the night.

Sarah’s debut novel, ASSASSIN’S HEART (HarperTeen, February 2nd, 2016) is a Young Adult Fantasy. In the Kingdom of Lovero, where families of assassins lawfully kill people for the right price, seventeen-year-old Oleander “Lea” Saldana sets out on a path of vengeance against the most powerful assassin family of all.

She is represented by Mollie Glick of Foundry Literary & Media.

Website | Twitter |Facebook | Pinterest | Goodreads | Blog

 

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Giveaway Details:

  • (1) Winner will receive a finished copy and some swag (bookmarks, postcards), US Only.

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Virtual Book Tour : Average Joe and the Extraordinaires by Belart Wright

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Average Joe and the Extraordinaires
by Belart Wright

GENRE: Action Adventure, Young Adult, Urban Fantasy

 

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BLURB:

On a dark and balmy Floridian night, a strange and mysterious dark haired woman stalks the shadows of the local college football stadium, on the prowl for secrets buried deep beneath the Earth. These secrets, she knows, may change everything including this small town.

While knocking back illegal drinks with his friends at the hallowed Orangetown Pickers’ college football stadium, average kid Joe Black finds himself desperately trying to save the life of a beautiful dark haired woman after a deadly explosion violently interrupts his fun and games. While trying to fathom why he would even do something so reckless he soon finds himself entangled in a dangerous game of terrorist plots, mistaken identities, hard boiled detectives, the criminal underworld, and of all things magic as he tries to escape with his life and make sense of it all.

Joe faces many challenges from all new enemies, assassins, and even his own friends. Can Joe navigate all this danger, escape with his life, and handle his biggest challenge to date, finding something about himself that is truly extraordinary? Find out within the pages of Average Joe and the Extraordinaires.

Buy Book: Amazon

The book will be $0.99 during the tour.

My Review

I like books that deal with ordinary folks doing extraordinary things and Joe is the epitome of an ‘Average Joe’. Caught up in this world quite by accident he quickly adapts and manages to keep his sense of humour throughout.

I liked Joe’s personality and the author did a realy good job in portraying his character both through his POV and through his friends’ eyes. Friendship is a recurring theme in this book and I liked that too.

The descriptions used are concise and detailed enough without being preachy or overbearing. The pacing is fast and filled with action in which Joe often plays a central role. The magical or supernatural elements used were also pretty cool; I especially liked the ability to morph into other people. Even though the concept is not original, it was integrated in such a way as to give a fresh take  a popular concept.

My only gripe was the stucture of the dialogue which reminded me of the way plays/scripts are written with each character’s name appearing before each speech. I would have rather just the ordinary quotation marks and use of context to indicate who was speaking.

Overall, an entertaining , intriguing, action-packed read which, because of the lack of indecent language and explicit scenes, makes it appealing to all ages.

My Rating

4 hearts

EXCERPT

She rode off, down the street on her motorbike that was now a sky blue color to match the highlights in her hair, her ponytail, and her full face helmet. As she drove, she thought of her next move. She had a long list of places she wanted to visit, mostly associated with Grabas and the secrets he held beneath the stadium. But now her focus was on getting Joe out of trouble. She needed to figure out who has gunning for him…or better yet, she had to convince the man who hired this assassin to call off his killer. That man was definitely Robert Grabas.

AUTHOR Bio and Link:

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Belart Wright was born and raised in Detroit Michigan with a short but adventurous stint in St. Ignace during his childhood. Always poor, Belart had to learn to use his imagination to fuel the fun he had. Whether it was drawing cool and dangerous looking heroes to creating fully fledged storylines with his action figures to writing stories about kids similar to himself with fantastic abilities and destinies, Belart was always an expert in delving into other worlds that were not his own.

Always naturally talented at writing, it took the advice of his brother, and a little creative boost from his high school creative writing teacher to get him to realize that writing was something he could do really well and pursue as a career. To this day he revels in building worlds and characters from the ground up such as the worlds of Hell Warriors, Story of K, Cyborgs and Deadmen, and Pannam which are all working titles.

In his spare time Belart tries to update his two blogs whenever he can, but mostly just ends up writing or editing. As a huge gamer he plays a lot of games online and off with his favorites at the time being Borderlands 2, Phantasy Star Online, X-Men Legends, and Dark Souls. He just wishes he had more time to whittle his impossibly long gaming list down which goes all the way back to PS1 and Sega Genesis classics. He and his buddies at FlubberKnuckle Studios are also working on several new game IPs. He is also patiently waiting for the next installment of the superb Legacy of Kain series.

Author Links:

Personal Blog * Story Blog * Google+* Goodreads

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION

Belart Wright will be awarding a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $10 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn host.

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Book Blitz: Elementals: The Prophecy Of Shadows by Michelle Madow

 

Elementals: The Prophecy of Shadows
by Michelle Madow
Release Date: January 26th 2016

Summary from Goodreads:

Filled with magic, thrilling adventure, and sweet romance, Elementals is the first in a new series that fans of Percy Jackson and The Secret Circle will love!

When Nicole Cassidy moves from sunny Georgia to gloomy New England, the last thing she expects is to learn that her homeroom is a cover for a secret coven of witches. Even more surprisingly … she’s apparently a witch herself. Despite doubts about her newfound abilities, Nicole is welcomed into this ancient circle of witches and is bedazzled by their powers—and, to her dismay, by Blake—the school’s notorious bad-boy.

Girls who get close to Blake wind up hurt. His girlfriend Danielle will do anything to keep them away, even if she must resort to using dark magic. But the chemistry between Blake and Nicole is undeniable, and despite wanting to protect Nicole from Danielle’s wrath, he finds it impossible to keep his distance.

When the Olympian Comet shoots through the sky for the first time in three thousand years, Nicole, Blake, Danielle, and two others in their homeroom are gifted with mysterious powers. But the comet has another effect—it opens the portal to the prison world that has contained the Titans for centuries. After an ancient monster escapes and attacks Nicole and Blake, it’s up to them and the others to follow the clues from a cryptic prophecy so that they can save their town … and possibly the world.

 

BUY LINKS:

“Elementals is going to blow your mind!”
-Crossroad Reviews, ★★★★★

“Five glittery stars for being such a compelling read!”
-Andrea Heltsley, Goodreads Reviewer ★★★★★

“A perfect mixture of magic and mythology. An entrancing story of trust, friendship and well naughty boys. WITCHES are not the only thing walking the earth!”
– BenjaminOfTomes, BookTuber ★★★★★

Read And Except

“Run!” Blake yelled, grabbing my arm and pulling me off the merry-go-round.

It spun under our weight, and I held onto the metal bars, pushing off them to leap over the edge. The cedar chips on the ground cushioned my landing. The car was behind us, which would mean running towards the monstrous hound, so I bolted for the playground, hurrying up a ladder of rubber tires that led to the closest platform. Blake followed close behind. The second he was up he took the lighter out of his pocket and aimed a blue fireball at the tires. They melted to the ground seconds before the hound reached them.
It looked up at us and growled—a low, menacing sound that if I spoke dog I would have assumed meant “I’m going to have you for dinner”—and tried to jump onto the platform. It missed by only a few inches.
Blake flicked on his lighter and threw a fireball at its chest, but the hound jumped to the side to get out of the way. It turned all four of its eyes up at us, one head letting out a deep roar as the other snapped its teeth together, taking bites out of the air.
My hands shook, and I gripped one of the log posts behind me for support. “Have you learned how to fight these things in homeroom?” I asked Blake, my voice rising in panic.
He threw another fireball, and it missed the hound again. “No,” he snapped, the flames lighting up his face. “Fighting legendary creatures isn’t on the syllabus.”
“Maybe it should be,” I said as he launched another ball of fire, hitting the hound on its front paw. Both of its heads yelped in pain. The scorpion tail lowered between its legs, and it growled again before turning away from us and running around the side of the playground, woodchips flying behind it as it gained speed.
My heart pounded, and I looked around to figure how to get off the platform. The exit was a slide that dropped off at the monkey bars. I could get down and run to the car, but I didn’t know where the hound was, and leaving the platform could give it the perfect opportunity to pounce.
Then the hound growled again. I turned around, spotting it clamoring up a ladder of logs that led to a nearby platform. Only a wobbly bridge separated that platform from our own. My entire body shook, and I moved closer to Blake, grabbing his arm for support.
The hound reached the top of the platform, and its glowing eyes narrowed, ready to attack.
Not having anywhere else to go, I launched myself down the slide and hurried to the monkey bars, climbing up the ladder and hoisting myself on top of them. Gripping the sides, I crawled to the center bar, but the ground spun beneath me, my lungs tightening as I looked down. I had to take a few deep breaths to steady myself. A six-foot fall wasn’t deadly. Now wasn’t the time to let my fear of heights get to me.
Blake scrambled behind me, and I turned around to make sure he wasn’t hurt. Sweat dripped down the sides of his face from the flames, but other than that he looked okay. He took his lighter out again, holding it up in preparation to create another fireball.
I looked back at the hound in time to see it run along the bridge and hurl itself towards us. It bared its teeth as it flew through the air, its arms outstretched as it came closer to the monkey bars. But it must not have had enough force behind the jump, because it fell to the ground with a loud thump. It stood and shook the woodchips off its fur, a low growl coming from somewhere deep in its throat as it turned its heads up to look at us.
Before I could say anything to Blake about how completely screwed we were, he threw two balls of fire towards the hound, hitting both of its faces. It howled and collapsed, whimpering as it buried its snouts in its paws. The smell of burnt skin filled the air. My stomach swirled with nausea, and I lifted a hand to my nose to block out the smell.
Only a few seconds passed before it stood up again. The fur on its faces had changed into a charred grey. Its yellow eyes glowed brighter now, both snouts chomping madly in the air, strings of saliva dripping to the ground as it waited to devour whichever one of us lost our balance first.

About the Author

Michelle Madow grew up in Baltimore, graduated Rollins College in Orlando, and now lives in Boca Raton, Florida. She wrote her first book in her junior year of college, and has been writing novels since. Some of her favorite things are: reading, pizza, traveling, shopping, time travel, Broadway musicals, and spending time with friends and family. Michelle has toured across America to promote her books and to encourage high school students to embrace reading and writing. Someday, she hopes to travel the world for a year on a cruise ship.


Author Links:
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Book Blitz: Curses & Ash by Tiffany Duane

Curses & Ash (Book Two)
Release Date:  January 2016
Jester Ink Press
Summary from Goodreads:
Discover the spellbinding sequel to Coral & Bone…
A demented twin sister, a demon hijacking her powers, and a mysterious journal filled with more questions than answers—Halen needs her Guardian Dax more than ever. But if she confides in Dax, she fears he will never forgive her, not after all he sacrificed to help her vanquish Asair.Halen drowned Asair in a tornado of wings—at least, she thought she killed him. Why then does his mocking voice snake through her thoughts, enticing her to surrender her power?
Maybe she screwed up—big time—but she will never allow Asair to control her magick. And when Etils’ fires threaten the Earth, suspicions surrounding Asair’s death rise, igniting restlessness within the realms. Her life in balance, Halen must race time, purge the demon’s soul before flames consume the Earth or the Tari strike first. 

Buy Links:

Book One:

(linked to Goodreads)

 

About the Author
I write stories about magick, love and dark creatures lurking in the shadows. When I’m not lost in Editland you can find me reading a book from my towering TBR pile or at the movie theater nibbling licorice. I don’t have a lucky number, but my favorite time is 11:11. I completely believe that the fortunes found inside cookies will come true and that you must be careful when wishing on stars. I live on an island, so if you want to visit you’ll need a boat, and if you want to survive the passage, be sure to bring candy for the mermaids.

Author Links:

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Cover Reveal: Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey presented by Entangled Teen Crave

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YA Fantasy / Fairytale retelling of The Swan Maiden with a blood feud twist like Romeo & Juliet? Say whaaaat?

Welcome to the cover reveal for

Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey

presented by Entangled Teen Crave!

Who else is excited for this book???

Sign up here to join the tour!

 

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Dating isn’t easy when you’re in the middle of a blood feud.

Anastasia Vila’s family can turn into swans, but just once she’d like them to turn into responsible adults.

After hundreds of years, they still cling to the blood feud with the Renard family. No one remembers how it started in the first place—but foxes and swans just don’t get along.

Vilas can only transform into their swan shape after they have fallen in love for the first time, but between balancing schoolwork, family obligations, and the escalating blood feud, Ana’s got no time for love. The only thing keeping her sane is her best friend, Pierce Kent.

But when Pierce kisses Ana, everything changes.

Is what Pierce feels for her real, or a byproduct of her magic? Can she risk everything for her best friend? And when the family feud spirals out of control, Ana must stop the fight before it takes away everything she loves.

Including, maybe…Pierce.

This Entangled Teen Crave book contains language, violence, and lots of kissing. Warning: it might induce strong feelings of undeniable attraction for your best friend.

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Love Me, Love Me Not by Alyxandra Harvey
Publication Date: February 22, 2016
Publisher: Entangled Teen Crave

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Alyxandra Harvey lives in a stone Victorian house in Ontario, Canada with a few resident ghosts who are allowed to stay as long as they keep company manners. She loves medieval dresses, used to be able to recite all of The Lady of Shalott by Tennyson, and has been accused, more than once, of being born in the wrong century. She believes this to be mostly true except for the fact that she really likes running water, women’s rights, and ice cream. Aside from the ghosts, she also lives with her husband and their dogs. She likes cinnamon lattes, tattoos and books.

Connect with the author: Website | Twitter | Tumblr | Goodreads

 

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Curiosity Quills’s January Releases Review Tour: Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth

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Hello readers

Welcome to the Curiosity Quills Press’ January Releases Review Tour! Today I have for you my review of Cogling by Jordan Elizabeth and an excerpt. Enjoy!!

COGLING, by Jordan Elizabeth Cogling

Genre: Middle-Grade fantasy
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Date of Release¬¬: January 25, 2016
Cover Artist: Mandie Manzano

I received an eARC from the publisher Curiosity Quills Press for an honest review. This in no way influences my review.

Find Online:

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Pre-Order:

Amazon US | Amazon UK

Description:

When fifteen-year-old Edna Mather tears an expensive and unfamiliar pocket watch off her little brother’s neck, he crumbles into a pile of cogs right before her eyes. Horrified, Edna flees for help, but encounters Ike, a thief who attempts to steal the watch before he realizes what it is: a device to power Coglings—clockwork changelings left in place of stolen children who have been forced to work in factories.

Desperate to rescue her brother, Edna sets off across the kingdom to the hags’ swamp, with Ike in tow. There, they learn Coglings are also replacing nobility so the hags can stage a rebellion and rule over humanity. Edna and Ike must stop the revolt, but the populace believes hags are helpful godmothers and healers. No one wants to believe a lowly servant and a thief, especially when Ike has secrets that label them both as traitors.

Together, Edna and Ike must make the kingdom trust them or stop the hags themselves, even if Ike is forced to embrace his dark heritage and Edna must surrender her family.

Review

Can I just say that Curiosity Quills Press’ book covers are the prettiest? Even the formatting is really nice!!

Cogling is one of those books whose characters take a piece of your heart and will stay with you long after you’ve finished the book. The author does such a great job building this world and crafting her characters and it really shows in their realness and depth.

I found myself totally riveted to my Kobo and immersed in this world where Edna, her brother and her mom are barely scraping together a living. At 15 years old she is already working along with her younger brother . Their dad is mentioned only briefly since he is hardly ever there, being a railroad worker. Edna is almost a mom to Harrison so she is the first to realise something is off about him after the hag has replaced him with a cogling. This ‘cogling’ is a doppelganger held together and operated by clockwork, which I thought was just ingenious. So, for all looks and purposes, it was supposed to imitate Harrison so that he wouldn’t be missed.

Anyway, without giving away too much, Edna finds out the cogling is not her brother when it disintegrates in front of her eyes into clockwork, gears and other bits and pieces. She then sets out to investigate and finds out the hags have kidnapped Harrison so of course she sets out to retrieve her brother and things only get more intriguing for there on.

Now, this is a world with magic but not everyone has it and those that do,the hags and the ogres, were once in control and wish to be so again. So they have hatched an evil plan to suppress the humans which Edna stumbles upon in her attempts to retrieve Harrison.

I loved all the characters, even the villains ,especially Mother Sambacus because they were so well developed, interesting and multi-faceted. The character development is done in such in way that I found myself relating on a deep and personal level with them especially Edna, Ike and Harrison. I couldn’t help but admire Edna’s strength and her love of family. She literally did everything in her ‘power’ to rescue her brother and others and refused to allow herself to let doubt cripple her ability to do so, even when the odds were stacked impossibly high against her!

Ike, the secondary character has earned a place in my heart too. Even though in the beginning his motives were ulterior, he kept his word and helped Edna to rescue her brother and didn’t just stop at that. The romance that developed is one that makes sense to me. I can imagine that going through danger and  uncertainty together could cause feelings to develop and mature, as a bond would form between the two.

Mother Sambacus lived up to the idea of a villain and added tension and suspense to the plot. The plot itself, though not overly complicated, was clever and the gripping  and with a few twists interwoven to add that element of surprise which just kicked it up a notch. The pacing is fast and steady and there is more than enough nail-biting tense moments to keep one’s eyes glued to the page.

The action and intrigue never let up! Seriously!! With impeccable narration and riveting , imaginative , well- thought out scenes and plot twists, the author was able to grab my attention and keep me enthralled! Cogling really was a page-turner that I had to force myself to read slowly, to savour every word and nuance, so as not to miss anything from this veritable feast of words!  It will tug on your heartstrings and have you rooting for Edna and Harrison and will leave you totally satisfied yet disappointed that it’s come to an end. I can’t wait for you to read it! Cogling has my stamp of approval and I highly recommend it to EVERYONE!!

My Rating

5 hearts

 

Cogling

Excerpt

clock

Prologue
Green smoke snaked up the side of the tenement and drifted over the sill of an open window. A breeze blew the vapor into a column before it solidified into the shape of a stout, young hag. She shook her crimson curls away from her face and straightened the hood of her cloak to keep her kohl-lined, silver eyes shadowed.
The scent of lavender clung to her robes, washing over the small room. Two brass-framed beds crowded the floor. Blankets covered sleeping children. A little boy wheezed against the head of his stuffed bear, drool dripping onto the wool.
The hag squinted to see the goldenrod dream cloud above his head—a dream about seeing his father again. She frowned at the other bed, where a sleeping teenager lay with a threadbare blanket tugged around her chin. Even squinting, the hag couldn’t make out a dream cloud. The girl was too old to be of any use.
The hag slithered to the boy’s bed and, from the folds of her cloak, drew out a rectangular box four inches long, with a circular indentation on one side. She set it on the floor to remove a vial and rag from her skirt pocket, the rough wool of the rag irritating her fingertips.
“Do it, Simone,” the hag muttered to herself as she willed her hands not to tremble. “Make the Dark Mother happy.” She couldn’t fail at her first mission.
Holding her breath, Simone dribbled three drops onto the rag, yanked the teddy bear away, and shoved the drugged cloth against the boy’s mouth. His eyes opened, his gasp muffled, and his body jerked. Simone stiffened.
The girl moaned. Her mattress rustled as she rolled over to face the wall, brown curls shifting over her pillow.
Simone’s heart thudded. By the seven Saints, she should’ve cast a sleeping spell over the girl. The Dark Mother preferred humans to think hags were harmless healers, not thieves who kidnapped children.
The boy writhed, squeaks emerging from behind the rag. Simone pressed harder. She needed his breath in the wool to disguise and fuel the machine.
The potion took hold and the boy collapsed. Simone’s thick lips curved over her broken teeth. She lifted a pocket watch from around her neck and positioned it into the crevice in the metal box. As the two pieces connected, a chime rang out. She set the box beside the limp little boy and draped the rag over it. Even though she should wait to make sure his breath stuck in the machine, she couldn’t risk waking the girl.
The metal stretched to become his replica as if it were made of putty. With a second chime, the metal shimmered and dulled into the pale peach of his flesh, becoming an exact duplicate of the child.
“Mine.” Simone hefted the little boy into her arms, leaving the duplication on the bed, and transformed to smoke before the chimes awoke the girl.

 

About The Author:
Jordan ElizabethJordan Elizabeth, formally Jordan Elizabeth Mierek, writes down her nightmares in order to live her dreams. With an eclectic job history of working as a college professor; historic costumed interpreter at Fort Stanwix, Victorian Leisure Fair, and Mayfaire on the Green; office specialist; sales clerk; election inspector; and trainer, she is now diving into the world of author.It happens to be her favorite one.
When she’s not creating art or searching for lost history in the woods, she’s updating her blog, Kissed by Literature. Jordan is the president of the Utica Writers Club and maintains JordanElizabethMierek.com.

She roams Central New York, but she loves to travel. A great deal of time has been spent in a rural town very similar to Arnn, the setting of her novel ESCAPE FROM WITCHWOOD HOLLOW.

Find the author Online:
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Curiosity Quills Press (CQ) is a small hybrid publishing company specializing in genre fiction of the highest quality. With 150+ titles in our catalog already and approximately 6 new books coming out each month, there’s never a dull moment at CQ. We work with major retailers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Audible to ensure that you, the reader, can find whatever you are looking for at your convenience.
Founded in 2011 by Eugene Teplitsky and Lisa Gus, CQ was initially a resource portal for writing and publishing, created in an effort to help writers, like themselves, survive the publishing industry. After rapid success, CQ morphed into publishing press that over time has solidified its share in the market. Now we spend our days searching for the next great escape!

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Book Blitz: The Lost Heir by Allison Whitmore

The Lost Heir
Allison Whitmore (with Erin Virginia & Grace Arden)
Published by: Booktrope Publishing
Publication date: December 8th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Isabella Foxworthy was just another girl…until she learned she was an empath, able to read the energy of others. A secret world known as the Violet City lies beneath her family’s hotel in Los Angeles. Through this discovery, Isabella is catapulted into a whirlwind of magic, adventure, and danger. The Violet City holds the key to protecting her stability; her family hotel, her friends, and her very sanity.

With morphlings, empaths, and fair folk also comes a powerful entity that twists her mind into knots, threatening everything she loves. Now, Isabella and her new friends—a guitar-playing jock, his gifted but neurotic brother, and a set of over-indulged twins—have until her 16th birthday to save her world with the help of someone who’s been lost for a very long time…the lost Foxworthy heir. But will they find him in time? And will he be a friend or foe?

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EXCERPT:

The sun was beginning to set and the bright day had begun to dissipate as dusk slowly fell over the Culver Hills village center, if one could really call it a village in the middle of Los Angeles. The air grew dense and musty. All the street lamps were off except one, which flickered in a slow, steady beat. Only a small number of cars cruised the road as the kids walked down Main Street toward where the Foxworthy Hotel was perched at the top of the hill. This dark stillness was not usual for this time of day. Something was off.

“Get off me!” The voice filled Isabella’s ear a block away from the hotel trolley stop. Her gut tore in two with fear. ”Give that back.”

Isabella slowed down to see Cleo marching back toward the same two bullies she’d rescued Pythian from the other day, one of whom had Xander by the shirt collar as the other was rummaging through Xander’s backpack. Cleo’s shoes lay in a clump.

“There are so many goodies in here. Gum drops. Chocolate snatches. Debbie cakes. And my personal favorite—this camcorder. Oh, wait… no. There’s a little digital camera, too. Looks like Christmas came early for us. Isn’t that right, Sloane?”

“Put my brother down, or you’ll be sorry,” Cleo shouted.

As requested, the boy shoved Xander, sending him tumbling into a nearby thorn bush. “Ahhrrk!” Cleo went straight to his side.

It looked like the kid with Xander’s backpack might consider going for Cleo’s purse, but before that could happen, the other boy, Sloane, said, “Dude, let’s get outta here.” Seth, who was bigger and taller than both of them, and Isabella, whose nostrils flared like a lion, hustled after them.

“I know those guys,” Isabella told Seth.

“Go back and stay with Cleo,” he said.

“Watch me, Superman.”

They looped around the corner as the bullies flew up the service road that led to the back of the hotel. Before they could get too far, four figures in black appeared; from where, Isabella could not tell. Two grabbed the boys. Another took Xander’s backpack. Seth and Isabella both stopped. Cold licked Isabella’s heart. Not an eerie cold, but like a soothing glass of cold lemonade on a scorching day in July.

“What do we do?” Isabella whispered.

“I would tell you to go back, but you’d just make too much noise arguing with me, so I say just shut up.”

“If you tell me to shut up one more time…”

“Not now.”

“Right.”

The two figures holding the boys seemed to melt into the darkness of the trees.

“Where the hell did they go?” Seth asked, protectively pushing Isabella behind him.

She did not fight it. She was starting to become frightened, less of the situation and more of herself. Things had been off more than usual today. For the first time since her parents’ death, she’d felt completely protected, and she wasn’t sure it was all due to the necklace she had been wearing. It was so bizarre.

She was attuned to Cleo and Xander, who were usually never around at the holidays because, like her friend Lana, their parents traveled at that time. She’d felt everything from them: Xander’s exhaustion; Cleo’s boredom and overprotectiveness of her brother. The Logan brothers, however, were different. One minute, she felt Micah’s agitation with Xander, but the next, it would grow cold. And Seth—that boy, she couldn’t get a handle on at all. The only thing she got a sense of was fierce protection, particularly for Micah, but for her as well. She really did not know why.

That was never part of it; she had never felt the direction of a person’s emotions until now. She’d never felt so hot and cold about it. The five of them, connected by a string. It made no sense. Why would she be connected to these random kids?

The two figures in black who had stayed behind whispered to each other. Seth stepped to the side, taking Isabella with him. ”We should go back.”

But he was too late. The men had spotted them and were heading their way. Neither Seth nor Isabella dared to move. In an instant, the tallest of the figures, a young man of about twenty, stood before them. His skin was a beautiful caramel color, his eyes a startling green, and his hair—Isabella saw, as he pushed the hood off his head, he had a nest of shiny curls. He wore a goatee, and his eyes drooped with intellect.

“Declan Timothy. This is Max.” He thumbed at the guy behind him. “Just wanted to give this back to the kid.”

He pushed the backpack into Isabella’s arms. Her vocal cords decided to twist into a knot, so she was unable to say thank you.

“And to tell you to be careful. Tonight is going to change things for you.”

That did it. No more evil cats holding her tongue hostage. “What the heck does that mean?”

“You’ll see. If you need us, ask Theophilus where to find us.”

“Wait a minute,” Seth said, pinning Declan with a heated gaze. “Who are you guys?”

“The Midnight Brotherhood. Be careful, Isabella. And you—make sure she listens.”

“Sure,” Seth replied.

Then they, too, faded into the night.

Seth and Isabella looked at each other, not saying a word. For some reason, words did not seem appropriate at that moment.

When they returned to their friends, Seth spoke quietly as Isabella returned Xander’s backpack to him. “Let’s go home.”

The trolley was nowhere in sight, which was more evidence to Isabella that something was not right. From the bottom of the hill, the hotel was as dim and desolate as it had appeared from the center of the village. With heavy legs, they began up the hill. They climbed the front steps and walked into the lobby. Candlelight dotted the room. Elyse was the first person to approach them; her waitress apron was undone, her hair out of place.

“Thank God you’re all right.”

“What’s going on?” Isabella asked.

“I…” Elyse burst into tears.

“Elyse, tell us now! What happened?”

Elyse wiped her face. “I don’t really know. Everything blacked out for a while. It went cold, and I got really tired. It almost felt like I fell asleep for a while, but then when I woke up, I was standing in the same place I had been before. Right inside the Lily Field ballroom. And then—”

 

Author Bio:

Allison Whitmore was born in Los Angeles and loves to tell good coming-of-age stories with a hint of romance. You will find her characters going on an adventure or two as well. Outside of writing, Whitmore enjoys classic films, hiking and spending time with family and friends. She loves it when fans reach out to her. You can reach her at allisonwhitmoreauthor@gmail.com, follow her on Twitter: @alli_whitmore or join her on Instagram @allisonwhitmoreauthor.

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Cover Reveal: Greta And The Lost Army by Chloe Jacobs

Greta

Book Title: Greta and the Lost Army (Mylena Chronicles, #3)
Series Name: Mylena Chronicles (Previous books are: Greta and the Goblin King and Greta and the Glass Kingdom
Author: Chloe Jacobs
Release Date: Feb. 1, 2016
Genre: YA Fantasy / Fairytale Retelling

GatLA

Greta and the Lost Army Book Synopsis:
A fate as unavoidable as love itself…

After spending the last four years trapped in a place of monsters, demons, and magick, the last thing the fierce teenage bounty hunter Greta expected was to ever be back on Earth. But a rare opportunity gives her and the Goblin King Isaac the opportunity to do just that. Now she’s home. With a boy in tow. And her parents have lots of questions.

Although Greta finally has her heart’s deepest wish—to see her family again—every step she takes to reconnect with them drives her further away from Isaac. Greta and Isaac planned for her to return to Mylena and become his queen, but she’s not sure if she can go back to that harsh world, though staying on Earth means giving up the boy she loves.

But a powerful enemy refuses to let Greta escape. A demon who will stop at nothing to destroy her and everything she loves. Even if it means following her to Earth and forcing her to face a fate as unavoidable as love itself.

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Book 1: Greta and the Goblin King:

GatGoblinKing

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Book 2: Greta and the Glass Kingdom:

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Author Bio:

Chloe Jacobs is a native of nowhere and everywhere, having jumped around to practically every Province of Canada before finally settling in Ontario where she has now been living for a respectable number of years. Her husband and son are the two best people in the entire world, but they also make her wish she’d at least gotten a female cat. No such luck. And although the day job keeps her busy, she carves out as much time as possible to write. Bringing new characters to life and finding out what makes them tick and how badly she can make them suffer is one of her greatest pleasures, almost better than chocolate and fuzzy pink bunny slippers.

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